UT More About Business Than Learning

RECEIVED Wed., Oct. 22, 2003

The UT administration has shown repeatedly that they are more interested in running UT like a business than as a site for learning. Case in point: UT sees graduation rates of students as a problem to be solved by the number crunchers in the Tower, tweaking tuition rates to manage students, but instead, the administration should let students choose their own rate of learning. The reality is that UT isn't interested in the choices individual students make regarding their own education and its pace; its attention is toward rankings that reflect the churning out – in standardized intervals of standardized products – workers for the Texas economy. Learning can't be sped up like products on an assembly line.
   Students and their parents pay good money (it's about to get much more expensive) for an education at UT as it is, and they should be the ones who determine the pace at which they want to participate in the process of education, not the Tower with its flat-rate tuition and five-year (graduation) plans. Longer graduation rates shouldn't be seen as an institutional problem to be solved through managing student choices but as individual choices, and they should stay that way. Go to www.utwatch.org to fight the university machine.
Nick Schwellenbach
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